Monday October 30th was the ground breaking for the Tinker Field History Center on site of Tinker Field. The preservation of Tinker Field was the catalyst that launched Orange Preservation Trust, OPT, 3 years ago. The threat of demolishing the field for a parking lot did not sit well for many in the community. Tinker Field was where the winter league baseball teams began. It was also the site of black league baseball and where the discussion of integrated major league baseball started. Not only was it the site where Orlandoans gathered for recreation it was also a site where citizens gathered for social causes. Tinker Field hosted Dr. Martin Luther King where he spoke out for racial equality.
As size demanded larger sports venues and inter-city competition for winter training teams intensified Tinker Field was over-shadowed by larger interests. The Camping World Stadium expansion began to pressure the field. Tinker Field did remain active for smaller eclectic events and exhibits especially during football and soccer playoffs.
Through public pressure and support of local Orlando and state officials and staff via many public meetings the idea of the Tinker Field History Center was born. City of Orlando District 5 Commissioner Regina Hill gathered today to thank all involved and to turn dirt to begin the construction.
For more information please check the following City of Orlando link http://www.cityoforlando.net/venues/tinkerfield/
Your support of preservation activism through volunteering and or donations helps insure that valuable cultural resources in Orange County, such as Tinker Field, will be protected.